Should Google Buy Myspace?

Filed as Editorial on January 31, 2011 9:39 pm

Hailed once as the king of social networking, Myspace fortunes have declined as of late, with Newscorp reportedly trying to sell the “social entertainment network” or spin it off as a separate company as a last resort.

While Myspace’s future is bleak, the company (or rather what’s left of it) may have some value to Google in the search giant’s quest to find relevance in the age of social networking.

Although attempts at reviving Myspace itself is futile, an acquisition by Google might be something beneficial to both parties for at least a couple of reasons.

Google Me Revisited

Facebook - Google Me LogoAfter rumors emerged regarding Google launching their own social network, the search engine giant quickly clarified that it wasn’t launching a Facebook competitor per say.

Instead Google clarified that they were going to make their sites “more social” in an attempt to make their various properties more appealing to the masses.

Unfortunately for Google, “socializing” their web properties is a doomed strategy which may not help the company in the future if users begin choosing social search over Google’s engineered search.

In order to compete against Facebook, Google is going to need to build something similar today, and acquiring Myspace could give them the talent and wisdom necessary to survive in this brave new social world.

Google Music FTW

Despite Myspace’s declining market share, the social network still has a heavy influence within the entertainment industry, primarily when it comes to musicians and movies.

While music, movies and entertainment are probably the only assets left that Myspace has left, a Google acquisition could help the search engine giant expose its Google Music store to a much larger audience.

Note: Although acquiring Myspace would not guarantee success as far as Google Music goes, it could help the company gain enough market share to effectively compete against Apple (via iTunes) and Amazon.

Why Not A Mere Partnership?

Even though Google already has a strong partnership with Myspace (via their advertising deal), what the search engine giant is lacking is expertise in the social space (at least for North America).

Acquiring Myspace would not only help them financially in the short term (via Google Music), but also help the company prepare for the next decade as the world places more emphasis upon social networks than search engines.

Although saving Myspace is probably too late, Google could use the site to “beta test” social features they would like to see in their ideal network, before deciding to challenging Facebook later on for the social crown.

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